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School's out for Lubna Forzley and she's got one thing on her mind: UnMarketing.

It’s official! Summer is here. My kids are off school. They have managed to destroy the house, and to be honest, I am in NO mood for marketing. In fact, I am in the mood for UnMarketing. That could be a good thing, right? 

Because frankly speaking, in my view, some marketing principles have to change, fast.

Someone once said:

Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.

And I could not agree more!

But all I keep seeing from brands out there, including the best of the best, is old style product marketing. As a consumer and as a Marketer, I feel that we need a serious dose of UnMarketing; a new take on how companies can interact with their customers. 

Today, we are experiencing a shift in the economics of attention. If anything, the economics have reversed, we're in an age of abundance, where content is what is in surplus; there's no way you could possibly run out of it or lack for choices, and yet, it is attention that is increasingly defined by scarcity. 

Every single day, 4.6 billion pieces of content are produced. How do you as a marketer deal with this and with the fact that attention has become a currency?

To grab my attention, I would personally love to see brands engage better and deeper with me. I would love to hear more stories that connect with my heart and mind. I would love to see data and insights better used.

I would love to see more bravery. More humanity. More depth. More connection to a bigger purpose!

While these top my personal wish list, other experts Scott and Alison Stratten who co-authored UnMarketing share a few tips, that could help, as follows:

  1. Focus on your existing consumers and never let them down
  2. Attract potential customers by becoming an expert in your field
  3. Prove your expertise by creating content your customers will value
  4. Shape shareable viral content to boost your publicity
  5. Use social media to engage with your customers, one conversation at a time
  6. Establish your social media presence through a structured, but authentic approach
  7. Respond carefully to customer complaints on social media to maintain your reputation

Let me share an example of something daring that I saw this week.

Every year, the mayor of a tiny town in Lebanon called Broummana likes to create a stir; a marketing shock to attract the local and international media’s attention. 

Here is what he did this year; he hired a group of women as auxiliary police officers for the summer - and dressed them all in sexy shorts.

The issue has caused a stir in the press and on social media, with titles like: ‘Is this the most beautiful police force in the world? Or is this simply inappropriate?” and lots of debate on the topic.  

Watch his interview with the BBC here: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-middle-east-44738752/the-mayor-who-wants-a-sexy-police-force

What do you think: Marketing or UnMarketing?

Let me be clear, as a woman, I am neither for, nor against the idea. I am also not implying that he uses my so-called UnMarketing concepts.

What I like though, is the fact that he dared to do something different; the fact that he achieved his marketing objective.

Would love to hear more examples like the above. Help me out Marketeers, and share your secrets…Anything to entertain me, while the kids are destroying the house.

I wish you all a fantastic summer - Stay cool, Stay brave, and as Steve Jobs once said: Stay Foolish!

By Lubna Forzley, managing director, Stories, www.stories.co.ae

Author: The Marketing Society
Posted: 09 Aug 2018
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